Thoughts Written on January 6 – A Quadrille

My summer island beckons me

When the sun hides behind

Winter clouds. Her waves, trapped

In whispering shallows, softly request

My return. Her rocky shoreline

Curved in a waiting embrace.

Her salty scent of carefree

Days warming the frigid air.

Only 6 more months.

Quadruple prompts in this quadrille! Patrick’s Pic and a Word Challenge #196 – Islands was the basis for this poem while Jamie’s Wednesday Writing Prompt to create a poem about the seasons set the scene. I was also able to incorporate dVerse’s Quadrille #83 – Sun (Happy 8th Anniversary dVerse!!) and the Go Dog Go Cafe’s Tuesday Writing Prompt – Whispering Shallows. Whew!

I wrote this quadrille thinking of my two favorite islands – Maui (where the picture was taken) and Martha’s Vineyard. We’ve had lovely vacations in both these islands. They are vastly different in topography yet both bring a sense of peace and contentment – that “Hakuna Matata” feeling. Maybe it’s the sun on my skin or the smell of the sea or the gentle whisper of the waves that makes food taste better, colors look more vibrant, love feel deeper. I search for this during cold winter days.

©️ iido 2019

Advertisements

Liberty Eyes – A Ghazal

This close, I notice your eyes – surprise!

How much they see, with eyes – she spies…

The New Arrival, still fresh with hope

Believing the dream ‘till his eyes spot lies

The Father telling old fashioned stories

That Daughter, with wary eyes, defies

The Mother clutching her dark skinned Son

Fearing mistaken identity, her eyes pleading, cries

The Proudly Out, in their best prom suit

Lipstick matches rainbow eyes and bow tie

The Child, drinking water, no straw please

Less plastic to hurt dolphin eyes, she tries

The set of your lips, aware of the trials

Determined eyes still on the prize

With my whole being, I’ll carry your torch

That burns bright in my eyes, hope supplies

A late reply for Patrick’s Pic and a Word Challenge #192 – Eyes. We were in NYC this weekend and went to the Statue is Liberty (apologies, Patrick! But you know I am loathe to miss one of your challenges!). The picture above is a cast of Lady Liberty’s face.

This is also my second try at the ghazal form for d’Verse, hosted by Gay Cannon. I realize I’ve used the same ending rhyme as my last try, so I will try to remedy that if the inspiration strikes a third time! I did include my name in the last couplet – the name Irma means “complete or whole”.

This was the first time that I was able to climb up to the crown of the statue since I was a child. The feeling of climbing those narrow steps and thinking of the meaning of this statue, especially to an immigrant like myself, was overwhelming. I still believe in the American Dream and work to make sure my children – and all children belonging to anyone living in the USA – can achieve their American Dream as well.

The way to achieve that Dream may be harder after these 4 years are over, however as Ranger Jim said when he was telling us about Lady Liberty’s pose: she is in motion, moving forward and lighting the way. The Statue is Liberty – still a great message and example for all.

©️ iido 2019

Lola’s Magic – A Ghazal

When Lola* arrives, it’s hard to deny there’s magic
The children happily sigh, “She’s magic!”

My tween can whisper secrets in her ear
Lola – my spy who can pry – hush magic!

My sweet girl’s dollies all need a cuddle
Lola’s arms wide like the sky – hug magic

Train engineer boy with curious spark
Lola answers all the why’s – smart magic

The toddler is whining, “No” is his word
Lola sweet talks – he complies – bribe magic!

Then quiet, they gather around her chair
Lola gives sweets on the sly – bad magic!

Homemade dinner, there’s so much to clean up
Lola’s sink is spotless, dry – clean magic

I’m exhausted, drained, this job is so hard
Lola’s shoulder, allows me to cry – mom magic

My first attempt at the ghazal poetry form was inspired by Jamie’s Wednesday Writing Prompt to write about someone I admire. According to Gay Reiser Cannon at d’Verse, who introduced the components of the ghazal for their challenge, the ghazal’s narrator “is always a hero longing for the unattainable”. I hope my longing for the unattainable “motherhood” is evident here. Please feel free to comment on this form/content, etc. – all feedback is welcome!

* Lola is Filipino/Tagalog for Grandmother. This poem is dedicated to my mom, my children’s Lola. She really has the magic touch with my kids (along with my dad). They simply adore her! In fact, my youngest has declared Lola his best friend. This makes my heart so happy!

I know I can never reach the level of sacrifice that my mom has, but I can try to be the best mom to my kids as I can be. In the meantime, my mom has already surpassed motherhood goals and is approaching the pinnacle of grandmother-hood!

©️ iido 2019

Seeing Red – A Lai Poem

The last precious one
My final task done
Red rose
Above pollution
Away from poison
It grows
It’s a red beacon
In this world, barren
Sorrows

My steps are heavy
There’s pain in my knee
But still
I climb this aerie
To set my mind free
Fulfill
A promise, a plea
Keep on – hopefully
Until…

No one comes after
It’s such a bother
To care
There is no anger
It’s just whatever
I dare
Say that forever
Gone this red flower
No spare

Another Lai Poem — are you guys tired of this form? Not yet for me! The rhythm and rhymes challenge and intrigue me – it’s like a haiku but “extra” (at least in my humble opinion).

This Lai Poem incorporates Patrick’s Pic and a Word Challenge #187- Red and serendipitously, Hélène’s What do you see? photo prompt picturing a red flower (I’m calling it a rose) atop a high tower.. This image of an older woman precarious climbing this enormous tower reminded me of the Herculean task (or is it Sisyphean?) of climate change activists today and even for people like me (and hopefully you!) trying to do our part to protect our earth.

©️ iido 2019

Climate Schlimate – A Lai Poem

Animals dying
Habitats going
To pot
The ice is melting
Oceans are rising
It’s hot
Countries are drowning
Yet people thirsting
For what?

Science believing
Your eyes deceiving?
It’s not
Deniers lying
Oh so frustrating
The lot
Stories need sleuthing
Do some researching
A thought!

Our earth is crying
Who here is trying
To stop
Cars keep polluting
Factories spewing
The rot
More than recycling
Money resolving
Boycott

Now what’s our ending?
The land needs tending
We ought
Who are we saving?
People not caring
They’re taught
World’s for the taking
No one is sharing
Distraught

Another Lai Poem, this one written for Jamie’s Wednesday Writing Prompt at The Poet by Day. Her request: What are your everyday observations of the fallout from climate change. Or, maybe you don’t think climate change is for real. Tell us why.

I believe that climate change is happening at an alarmingly fast rate due to the negative impact of human consumption and disregard for conservation of our natural resources. We try to do our part to lessen our carbon footprint, however we can only do so much within the systems that don’t support this mission. For example, where we live they have stopped recycling paper except for cardboard, stopped recycling plastics and only recycle glass and metal. These recent changes have been due to China’s refusal to take garbage from the United States (read about it here, here, here and here).

Are we destined to become like the society in the movie “Wall-E”? As a mother, I do worry about the condition of this planet that my children will inherit. You would think that other parents/grandparents would feel similar however the prioritization of profits and a “not my problem” shortsighted attitude seems to derail this concern. At this point, if we don’t actively combat climate change, our future doesn’t seem that great.

©️ iido 2019

A Moment Caught – A Lai Nouveau

I think I’ve caught you
Little boy, aged 2
Hide seek
Like a bird, you flew
Behind that tree – Shhhhhh…
Quick sneak
Pretend “Where are you?
I cannot see through!”

Like that tree, you grew
My mind thinks, “Adieu!”
It’s bleak
When you hid, I knew
How quick the years queue
Don’t peek
Little boy, aged 2
I think I’ve caught you

I am so thrilled that Hélène Vaillant has resumed her “What Do You See?” Photo Prompt Series. The pictures she chooses usually have a whimsical side and this one above is no exception!

This poem responds to D’Verse and Frank Hubeny’s call to try the Lai Nouveau a variation of the Lai. I’ve also incorporated Patrick’s Pic and a Word Challenge #186 – Caught – this prompt could have gone in so many directions but the combination with Hélène’s picture sealed the deal!

This picture brings me back to the innocence of children, especially those kids who have not yet mastered object permanence. Magical thinking is a large part of these toddler years. As a parent, I still employ this type of thinking to try to stop time and prolong these captured moments.

©️ iido 2019

Heaven Sent Group Run – A Lai Poem and Running Update

Eyes up to heaven

Running mile seven

I’m tired

My legs feel deaden

“Come on,” you beckon

Perspired

Running moms hearten

Together driven

Inspired

Another Lai Poem for D’Verse. The topic for this one uses the prompt from Patrick’s Pic and a Word #185 – Heavens. I’ve been on a streak with Patrick’s wonderful prompts! Head on over and see the lovely photos and words he uses for his weekly challenge. Patrick’s photos and poems from his recent travels are magnificent!!

While I didn’t get to actually run my seven miles this weekend like I was supposed to (rain and family obligations had me cutting it short), I was very grateful for the women who joined me from my local Moms Run This Town chapter. I was running short intervals while two other mamas were running longer intervals and our speedster mama was just running. We would leapfrog each other on the out and back trail, coming back when we would get too far out.

Even though I was running by myself at my own pace for most of this group run, just knowing my running friends were ahead of me or behind me made me happy and kept my motivation high. That’s running heaven!

Edited to add: I’ve also submitted this for Jamie’s Wednesday Writing prompt on The Poet by Day to write about friends. Is it weird that most of my friends are runners or writers?

©️ iido 2019